Surgical treatment of recurrent lumbar disc herniation by transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion.
ABSTRACT Between 2001 and 2005, 43 patients (average age 54.2, range 36-68 years) with recurrent lumbar disc herniation underwent reoperation with the transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion (TLIF) technique at our unit. All cases were followed up for 24-72 months (mean 45 months) and graded using the Japanese Orthopaedic Association (JOA) score system pre- and post-operation and during the follow-up period. The leg pain of all patients was relieved significantly within one month postoperatively. The mean JOA score was improved from 9.3 before surgery to 25.0 at the final follow-up visit (P<0.0001). The average recovery rate was 86.0% (range 52-100%). General clinical outcome was excellent in 23 (53.5%) patients, good in 14 (32.6%) and fair in 6 (13.9%). The fusion rate was 100% two years postoperatively. Three patients (7%) had transient neurological deficits, which resolved completely within 3 months. There were no major complications. We, therefore, believe the TLIF technique to be an effective procedure with satisfactory clinical results for the treatment of recurrent lumbar disc herniation.